Don’t Feel Bad for Saying No

I have a problem.

I have trouble saying no.

And when I do say no, I feel bad.

Then I obsess over and over about being a bad person for saying no.

But when I say yes to something I don’t want to do or don’t have time for; I berate myself for not saying no. 

With all this ridiculousness and mental nonsense going on in my brain, I had an aha moment.

I should never feel bad again for saying no to something if it’s not a priority, if I don’t have time, if I don’t have the energy or if it’s not aligned with our current goals. Saying no when the situation isn’t right, is healthy for my well-being and inner peace. 

But even with my mind-shattering aha moment, I still apologize for saying no like I did something wrong or need permission to choose what to do or not to do in my life. 

I know! Crazy, right?

Do you struggle with the same thing? Do you feel like a jerk for saying no when your heart says yes? If so, why the heck do we do this to ourselves?

  • Fear of making someone mad, upset or disappointed
  • Fear of losing out on an opportunity
  • Fear of hurting someone’s feelings
  • Fear of being perceived as unhelpful or rude
  • Because we are people pleasers
  • Because we’ve always done that thing in the past
  • Because it’s expected of us

But these reasons are phooey, rubbish and pieces of junk. Saying yes when our hearts say no leads to resentment, frustration, stress and burn out. Neglecting self-care, family time and the space to pause are vital for a joyful and peaceful life. 

Yes, there are times to sacrifice when someone really needs your help. But on a regular basis, saying no and setting boundaries creates the space you need to expand your creativity, deepen your faith, to serve in areas most meaningful to you and to be present with your loved ones. 

When you feel bad for saying no, investigate yourself and ask these questions:

  • Why do I feel guilty for wanting self-care?
  • Am I really feeling guilty or not confident about my decisions?
  • Am I imagining others being upset with me or is it really true?
  • Am I afraid to be who I really am in front of others?
  • Am I afraid of confrontation?

For your family and for yourself, the best thing to do is to create healthy boundaries and sticking to them. Saying no and setting boundaries is hard at first. If you’re not used to it, you’ll feel mean and rude. I know I am still working on it. It feels weird, and I feel like a jerk!

But once you get over this initial hump, you’ll feel empowered and free. It will feel healthy instead of feeling oppressed with another weight added to your to-do list. 

When you say no, you are saying:

  • Yes, to honor what’s most important.
  • Yes, to allow the time to be creative.
  • Yes, to make family time a priority.
  • Yes, to have the space to heal and relax. 
  • Yes, to focus on my passions and goals.

One of the best decisions to make, is learning the power of saying no… and not feeling bad about it. You’ll be in charge in your life with the confidence to make the right choices regardless of what anyone thinks. If you want to live your best, harness the power of saying no. 

Photo by Erik Mclean on Unsplash

2 thoughts on “Don’t Feel Bad for Saying No

  1. YESSSS. I 100% agree with all of this. I have a hard time saying no, and I always feel guilty. I feel like I say yes too much don’t have the time to give 100% to any of my responsibilities. 😕 It doesn’t benefit anyone when you spread yourself too thin!

    Like

    1. I think as moms and women, most of us do this to ourselves. I know I will always need to work on this. But to give God 100%, we need to say yes to the right stuff to best serve Him with the talents He gave us.

      Like

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